Johanna, the more useful Chen (In-Depth Guide) by CrimsonFlood

Johanna, the more useful Chen (In-Depth Guide)

By: CrimsonFlood
Last Updated: Jun 7, 2015
1 Votes
Rating Pending
Build 1 of 2


Build: Build #1

Level 1
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Level 20

Threats to Johanna with this build

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Threat Hero Notes
Malfurion The roots are real? As if you'd care!
Arthas Again, roots are just not a great way to keep Johanna in place, and her blind can really fuck Arthas' Frostmourne up...
Sgt. Hammer You can just walk into her. If you activate your trait at the right time, she can't even push you away.
  No Threat
  No Threat
  No Threat
Jaina Only a threat if she picks up vulnerability at 16. Most of the Jainas go for the roots or 3rd wave of Blizzard though, so you should be fine.
Sylvanas Only a threat if she goes for vulnerability on her W, which most Sylvanases do, unfortunately. Also, she's hard to catch with Condemn.
Nazeebo His walls offer the only form of CC you can't evade. If he manages to catch you in one, save your D for as long as possible and - whatever you do - DON'T PRESS W! :D
Brightwing It's basically a race of skill between BW and you. If she manages to polymorph you first, you might be fucked. If you manage to press D first, she can't do that and you just don't care. She's a pain to lane against though, as you will literaly apply no damage to her.
Tyrande Vulnerability is Johannas biggest weakness (she can't evade it with her trait). As her healthpool isnt huge, you can die quickly from Tyrande's stun and trait if you fail to evade it.
  No Threat


Build: Build #2

Level 1
Level 4
Level 7
Level 10
Level 13
Level 16
Level 20

About Me Top

Hey there, I'm CrimsonFlood. I fell in love with Heroes of the Storm in February, as I finally got acess to the beta, and haven't slowed down on playing and enjoying it since. As of now, I got more than 1600 games under my belt (#nolife), most of them warriors or supports.
As Johanna came out, I see a lot of people play her with a kinda questionable build, so I wanted to give you my thoughts on her. Feel free to comment and give me your opinions on her playstyle and my build :)

Hero Overview & where this is going Top

Johanna is a warrior and a tank. Some consider her a solo-tank, and she can do that thanks to her survivability, but she also works great in double-warrior-comps.

+ insane survivability
+ great engage
+ decent cc/interrupts
+ unstoppable ( Iron Skin is love, Iron Skin is life :) )
+ ability to clump up enemies for aoe-stuff

- lacks damage, can't really do stuff on her own
- very poor lane-push (propably the worst solo-laner together with tyrande)
- little hard cc (Anub, ETC and Muradin just do it way better)
- very short stun durations, even with Blessed Shield

What I found so far is that you play well against an enemy Johanna when your team manages to just ignore her. Johanna deals little damage on her own, and her only hard CC before lvl 10 is a displacement with a .25 sec-stun. So if you get focused (and the enemy team wastes their valuable stuns on you), you should not build on survivability but be glad that they are stupid enough to do so while your team is ripping them apart.
I think though that people will soon figure out that it's best to just ignore Johanna if possible - in that way, playing against her is a lot like playing against Chen. So how can you cope with that? What I came up with is damage and as much cc as possible. So let's head to her

Abilities Top

Iron Skin (Trait, D)
Her trait is one of the main reasons to play her, I believe. Unstoppable every 20 seconds? Hell yeah! You can use it to walk into the enemy team as an engage, to soak up their CC unharmed, to annoy the enemy Muradin/Anub bcs all his CC doesn't do a thing^^ and - from 16 on - to run away if needed.
Punish (Q)
A nice slow on short cooldown, just its duration is a little low. You can spam it though, as its mana cost is quite low. Use it after your W, to slow someone who's chasing and as your main source of damage; your other skills are too valuable to waste them just for their little bit of extra damage. It's range is basically melee, but it hits everyone in a 180degree-radius in front of you, which might come in handy :)
Condemn (W)
The bread and butter of you being a tank. Use it as often as you can in teamfights, to get them clumped for damage from Kael or Jaina or even to get them into a wall from Nazeebo. You can pull people back into Gazlowes bomb, too, as enemies tend to leave it the very last second^^.
Another great use of it is to get the enemy damage dealers away from your backline. As you deal little damage, you should always keep an eye out for your backline and help them out if they need protection. Condemn anyone who's hurting your damage dealers, and Punish them afterwards (W, then Q is your most important combo), so that the rest of your team can kite back.
Third great use of it is interrupting stuff like Lili's or ETC's Ult, or even Tychus'Q and Azmodan's laser.
So, you REALLY need to save this ability for teamfights. Don't use it for the damage when going for seeds on Garden Terror or doign a dangerous camp anywhere. It is your only and most useful hard CC, don't blow it for nothing. Also, note that you can move while it's channeling!
Shield Glare (E)
Your last ability is a low-damage, large-area blind. You can use it defensively to save your backline when they are jumped by an Illidan or a Thrall (it's actually best against those two), but whomever you have as opponents, try to aim it on their assassins and don't blow it on their tanks. Another great use of it is to scout bushes or behind walls for enemies/abathur without having to face-check. Its range is quite nice, use that to your advantage :)

For Ults, see the

Talents Top


YES: Regeneration Master
In the first few levels, you'll still want to go for survivability, especially since the other talents are so bad. Regeneration master is the way to go here, as it makes you more durable especially in longer matches. On haunted mines, you might consider

USUALLY NO: Reinforce
It's basically block, just a little worse (yes, not better), as you have to pop your abilities to have it, so it costs mana to build up charges. That's not the main issue i have with it, though; the main problem with Block currently is that the most damage you will eat is ability-based. Kael, Jaina, Nazeebo, Ability-Falstad - they deal ability damage. And the most auto-attackers have such a high attackspeed that the block-charges will do less for you than Regeneration Master. On haunted mines, though, you won't collect many orbs, so you might as well go for it anyway. Also, it's okay against Thrall.

NO: Knight Takes Pawn
I have to admit that this one is tempting. You basically change from "not being able to lane-push" to a tanky version of Sylvanas. The only objection I have is that it doesn't help you in teamfights, and a Tank should really build for the team. Solo-Pushing is not your job, as your team might die without your protection. Waveclear is also not your job, as your assassins and specialists will always do a better job with it. So... you'll have to let it slide.

NO: Righteous Smash
Your mana-costs are very low anyway. As long as you don't waste mana on pushing lanes with low-dmg abilities, you should always be fine and this talent is just useless.


YES: Laws of Hope
This talent is just so great. Not only does it passively increase your health regen (increasing per level), but it also heals you if needed, so your healer doesn't have to worry about you as much. Great with Uther, as his heals have long CD. If, however, you have a very reliable healer, you might consider

SOMETIMES: Amplified Healing
This stacks with Regeneration Master. So, if you do a good job on collecting globes, your regen will be better with this one, and also heals during combat heal you for more. I think it might even be the best talent here; the thing is just that the ability to self-heal whenever YOU want is so awesome that Laws of Hope is hard to pass.

SOMETIMES: Eternal Retaliation
Actually, this one helps you a lot in teamfights and with your W. Every W you are able to cast has a huge impact on a teamfight, and this talent gives you more of those. The only reason to not go for this is that it hurts your survivability A LOT. The other talents in this tier are quite essential to keep you alive in those teamfights, so you might want to not go for it. you often only hit 2 people with your W, and 1,5 sec cooldown reduction is not worth giving up the main part of your sustain. Propably.

NO: Roar
It's not your job to deal damage. It's your job to cc and stay alive. So this talent straight-up loses against all the other choices.


YES: Battle Momentum
Battle Momentum OP! :D Nah, what makes it a little bad is that Johanna doesn't hit that fast (like Thrall, just that she doesn't have Windfury :[ ), but still - this helps you to get Condemn off in teamfights more often, so go for it!

SOMETIMES: The Crusade Marches On
Okay, you definitely want Battle Momentum. But in some cases, the enemy team just focuses you way too much. Eventhough this is kinda stupid, you might want to go for this talent, then. It helps your ability to shield and evade CC a lot, but it's still just not as helpful for the team. They need your W and your Q! (They also need you alive, though.)

NO: Sins Exposed
This would be a great talent if the damage boost wasn't that unsignificant. On level 20, you get 150 bonus damage out of it. That's nothing. Giving up Battle Momentum for that is just not worth.

NO: Conviction
I don't even know why people pick this talent. It's one of the worst in her kit. When you try to use it for getting away, you will still pull people towards you and allow them to get an auto-attack on you, which might kill you as you are running away. In teamfights, the short duration makes it useless, as 1 second is not enough to circle around somebody and bodyblock them after Condemn has hit. Also, you tend to run too far from your damage dealers when using this to chase, so I simply can't come up with a single situation where this talent would be helpful.


Johannas Lvl 10 Heroics are kinda weak, one just has to admit that. She makes up for that with her very good basic abilities though. Which Heroic to pick is really situational, I think:
Falling Sword (R)
Can be used to hard-engage into the enemy backline, or to jump out of danger, like with Illidan's Metamorphosis. It can really save you from deadly burst, too. Also it deals quite nice damage and interrupts on impact (perfect against Lili's Ult), BUT the big problem with it is that you vanish for a few seconds. And what happens when the tank just disappears for a few seconds? Right - the enemy jumps your backline and kills them all. So you have to be very careful with your timing. To be honest, I prefer to not take this heroic at all when you are the only warrior/frontliner in your team. Pick it up when someone else in your team is able to deliver stuns/hard CC. Also, if you happen to take it, try to not jump away too far from the rest of your team. Your damage is not even close to straight-up kill the enemy backline, and your team will need your protection as soon as you land.
Blessed Shield (R)
THE Go-To talent if you are solo-tanking/the only warrior in your team. Think of it more as an interrupt than a stun, as the stun duration is kinda short, though it locks the first target hit down for 2 whole seconds. The downside is that it is a skillshot, so before you miss it on a skilled Valla or Sylvanas, just use it on someone less mobile and let it jump to your real target. Problem with this heroic is that you can't really predict who it's going to hit, though. Using it in melee range is also a good idea, and thanks to your W you shouldn't have a problem being close to enemies =p Btw, the damage of this ult is not worth mentioning , so don't blow it for that reason. Think of it as an additional lockdown or interrupt.


YES: Burning Rage
So, this is where you start to get really annoying. People WILL tend to just ignore you. So, to counter that, apply some passive damage on them. Think of Johanna as a 7-year-old child who is constantly screaming "NOTICE ME, goshdarnit!" You also help your team with that extra damage. It's not much, but it really adds up, believe me. And it gives you a bigger chance to get focused, which is exactly what you want.

NO: Hold Your Ground
This talent would be useful if you get focused a lot. But you won't. Why would they, when you deal no damage and your stuns only last for 0.25 seconds? So, if you get focused, your team should be able to obliterate the enemy team in the meantime. Your survivability should still be enough without this talent, though.

Maybe: Subdue
Not a bad talent, to be honest, but it doesn't improve your Q enough to be picked over Burning Rage. However, if you want to experiment and help your team with kiting, you might still give this one a shot.

NO: Spell Shield
Just useless on this hero, for the same reason as Hold Your Ground is useless: Why on earth would the enemy team waste their precious high-damage abilities on an unstoppable, shielded, fast-regenerating tank? That just doesn't make sense.

This tier is where you can vary a bit, as it has a lot of great talents

YES: Fanaticism
Just an amazing talent. Now you won't only deflect CC while your trait is on, but also move faster. This helps you with 2 things:
1) escaping dire situations and
2) repositioning/closing gaps to the targets you want to hit with Condemn. Youst hit D and W right after that to make it a guaranteed hit. Might also just slow them with yout Q, whatever is available at that point.

NOT BAD: Blessed Hammer
This talent helps you deal more damage, making you more useful in teamfights as it becomes even harder to ignore you now. It is not as versatile as Fanaticism in my opinion, but it's still a good talent.

NOT BAD: Imposing Presence
Always worth a thought against auto-attack heavy damage-dealers like Illidan, Valla, Thrall, Hammer or even Tychus (only with Odin) and Tassadar.

NO: Holy Renewal
You already are tanky as hell, so why on earth would you need even more healing and give up utility or damage for that? Have some faith in your survivability, bro! (Note: Killing an enemy faster is always safer than trying to outheal him)


YES: Heaven's Fury
That upgrade is just insane. It nearly doubles your damage output with the ult and lowers its cooldown like crazy! When you are able to cast it against an enemy team AND a minion wave, you should have like no CD on your heroic at all. Also, it helps to chip away at the enemy backline. Amazing talent, go for it. It changes your heroic from "meh" to "not bad at all".

YES: Radiating Faith
Finally you can stun the WHOLE enemy team! Really needed when you go for Blessed Shield. The stun can really decide a teamfight, as it gives your team time to apply damage unharmed.

MAYBE: Storm Shield
If, for some reason, you don't feel like upgrading your heroic and your backline is very squishy, you might as well go for Storm Shield. Really not a bad choice, as it helps them survive a lot; I just think that the upgraded heroics are a little stronger.

NO: (!!!) Indestructible
I think this is the most overrated ability on Johanna. Why, you ask? Well, yes, you can survive dire situations with it, but often enough you don't. Picture your situation in a teamfight: You are the tank and very likely to get focused last. When you are the last person standing, a 5 second delay won't save your life and make this talent kinda useless as a result. Also, it's CD is too high to make it good. For comparison, Blink, which serves a similar purpose (just that it's more versatile) has a 40 seconds CD... Really, this talent feels like Ice Block, just that you don't get it on 13, but on 20. Therefore you can move while it's active. yaaaay.
The upgrades for your ultimates, on the other hand, help you win the teamfights and kinda prevent you from needing this talent. They are really good! So don't go for a selfish and useless survivability-talent on level 20! Your team needs you! And if you happen to die for them, make sure that they get kills for that!

Pair-Ups Top

I honestly think that Johanna doesn't work well with every team. But she works well with AOE, especially with Jaina. Condemn into Blizzard is so strong, since the enemy team will be slowed forever and can't jump your backline as a result.
Nazeebo also works fine, as do Kael'Thas and Gazlowe (he won't miss any Grav-O-Bombs anmyore, which can be huge!)
ETC with Mosh Pit can also be great, as you are able to drag people in and set up for it- you can't interrupt the moshpit when you are stunned for .25 seconds! =p
And Malfurion with his roots is a great addition to your W as well. Basically, anything that forces the enemy to stay close to you, seems like a good choice; also Johanna excells at clumping enemies up for your AOE-abilities. Even a Nova with a well-timed Precision Strike is a good choice (and you should flame the **** out of Nova if she goes for Triple Tap when she has Johanna in her team, that's just... not that smart^^)

I also think that Johanna is a pure Teamfighter (no push, bad escape, great engage, high survivability), so putting her into Push-Comps that are not able to deliver burst damage in teamfights might not be that great of an idea. Also, she kinda struggles when the rest of your team has no CC at all, bcs her own CC seems to be not enough to keep the enemy close to her, and her damage is too low to kill squishies on her own. (Actually, her damage isn't even that low in numbers, but you need way too much time to apply it. When you have high damage values in the stats screen, is's mainly because you stood close to the whole enemy team all the time with Burning Rage active.)

Sooo... that's about it. Thanks for reading :) Would really appreciate your opinion :)

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